Colombo, May 1 (newsin.asia) – Sri Lanka’s Tourism Minister, John Amaratunga, on Tuesday said his government had signed an agreement with a leading Chinese tour operator in a bid to attract more Chinese tourists to visit the island country, after a fall in numbers.
Amaratunga said, local tour operators ‘Green Leaves Leisure’, backed by the Tourism Ministry had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China’s Yingke Travel, to provide better facilities for Chinese tourists and promote Sri Lanka as a world class tourist destination.
Yingke Travel have assured the Sri Lankan government that it will attract over 100,000 Chinese tourists in the coming one year.
Amaratunga said China was an important destination for Sri Lanka Tourism and the government hoped to attract over 300,000 Chinese tourists at the end of this year.
He said the Ministry hoped to make China the leading destination for Sri Lanka tourist arrivals and the island’s tourism sector, the leading foreign exchange earner.
“The number of Chinese tourists we have attracted so far this year is not enough. We have to make an extra effort to bring in more Chinese tourists as the Chinese are going all over the world. We need to attract them here as well,” the Minister said.
He added that Yingke Travel had a network of over 12,000 branches and it was capable of attracting a large number of Chinese tourists to Sri Lanka.
The Minister further said that that by increasing the tourist arrivals, the government and the economy will benefit.
Amaratunga further said that two separate mass wedding ceremonies will be held in Colombo later this year with 100 Chinese couples, similar to the mass wedding celebrations held in the island country last year.
The Minister said this would also promote Sri Lanka as an ideal wedding and honeymoon destination.